How the Affordable Care Act is Impacting Nursing Homes
The Affordable Care Act (ACA) includes several important provisions that have a direct impact on nursing homes. Under the ACA, consumers now have easier access to more information on nursing homes to help in the selection of a facility and to monitor the care being provided. Consumers, for example, can access information on who owns the nursing home, how much the nursing home spends on resident care compared to administrative costs, the hours of nursing care residents receive, staff turnover rates, and the number of complaints and violations.
In addition, consumers can more easily file complaints about the quality of care in a nursing home with states required to have a process in place to resolve the complaints. Also, nursing homes have to meet new requirements in the event a facility is set to close its doors. Residents and their families must be informed of the closure far enough in advanced to plan for relocation. The state also has to ensure that all residents have been successfully relocated prior to closure.
Under the ACA, states can opt to participate in a national grant program to expand criminal background checks to more long-term care employees. Indeed, most states require some form of background checks on certified nursing assistants working in nursing homes, but with the national grant program funding is provided for states to perform background checks on additional types of employees coming in direct contact with patients and residents.
The new health law also includes the Elder Justice Act, which is designed to provide federal resources to prevent, detect, treat, understand, intervene in and, where appropriate, prosecute elder abuse, neglect and exploitation. Under the Elder Just Act, education, awareness programs, training and other services are available to millions of seniors across the United States. The Elder Justice Act provisions apply to the following long-term care providers that received at least $10,000 in federal funds during the previous year: nursing facilities, skilled nursing facilities, inpatient hospice units, and intermediate care facilities for mentally disabled. Assisted living facilities are not included under this statute.
We specialize in insuring nursing homes and other long-term facilities with a comprehensive insurance program that includes professional and liability, property, auto, crime, workers’ compensation and D&O and EPLI coverages. We also provide assistance with risk management and loss control to help address and minimize the various exposures nursing homes and other facilities face. Give us a call at Caitlin Morgan at 877.226.1027 to discuss how we can assist you in providing broad and responsive coverage for your nursing home insureds.
Source: AARP, Health Reform for Seniors